a maths mindset - exeter consortium · theory in her book ‘mindset: the new psychology of...
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A Maths MindsetJeremy Davy – Clyst Heath Primary School
Photo of me as a kid
Kid no good at mathss
“We’re no good at maths in our family…”
What is a Growth Mindset?
• Carol Dweck (Professor at Stanford University) developed the theory in her book ‘Mindset: The New Psychology of Success’• People tend to fall into a Fixed or Growth Mindset• Fixed Mindset – believe that intelligence/ability have a limit
and cannot be changed• Growth Mindset – that ability can be changed – it progresses as
the result of practice and application• Mindset can be very deep rooted and difficult to change if not
Pupils with a ‘Fixed Mindset’• Research shows more girls have a fixed mindset than boys in
maths• ‘Higher ability’ pupils often have a fixed mindset; having
always received praise for being ‘clever’, they won’t take on further challenges for fear of losing that ‘clever’ label• ‘Lower ability’ pupils with a fixed mindset perceive themselves
as ‘not clever’ and only ever capable of tackling ‘easy’ tasks• These children see ‘failure’ as something to be avoided, so
stay firmly in their comfort zone
Why Maths is Different (I think!)• We have a culture of those who ‘can’ and those who ‘can’t’ do
maths – even amongst teachers – which is particular to maths• There is a perceived division between the sexes which is
reinforced by media – ‘girls do writing, boys do maths’• Parents often have a very different experience of maths to the
one we’re teaching and can ‘avoid’ discussing it with children. “Mum and Dad can’t help me with my homework so it must be genetic!”• Lack of self-belief in maths can be perpetuated by families from
one generation to the next – (it happened to me!)
Minding Our Language• Using the language of progress rather than achievement• James Nottingham’s Sommelier story- recognising progress• “You’re great at English but I know you struggle with your
maths”. Child hears – “I can’t be good at both!” – John Hattie ‘Teacher’s estimate of achievement’ is #1 of 195 factors that improve outcomes
• Using ‘interesting’ rather than ‘difficult’ when describing tasks• ‘Good girl’ label conditions so that when the struggle comes -
some children do no have the strategies to cope• James Nottingham (Learning Pit) ‘Labels Limit Learning’ TED
Minding Our Language Praising effort, perseverance, motivation and progress • Well done – you’re learning to ………………..• Good – it’s making you think – that’s how your brain is growing!• Every time you practice, you’re making the connections in your brain stronger.• Be brave. Have another go. Maybe this time you could…….. • You’ve worked hard on this and you’ve succeeded because of…..x,y,z (success
criteria)• That picture has so many beautiful colours. Tell me about them.• You can use this mistake. Think about why it didn’t work and learn from it.
Our language tells children what we believe and what we value.
Strategies• Ability grouping in maths is associated with lower achievement. Both
low and high achievers raise their achievement when ability grouping is given up. Interestingly, high achievers are the ones who most benefit. DISCUSS!• Use “low floor—high ceiling” open-ended maths tasks. Puzzles,
challenges, and real world problems, for which there is no one right way to get there, are more beneficial than “closed” tasks where the goal is to get the right answer. Students need to see maths as a “learning subject” instead of a “performance subject.”• Maths should never be associated with speed. Stop giving timed maths
tests. Stress shuts down the brain’s working memory, which is the part of the brain needed for the task in the first place. Timed tests are the early on-set of maths anxiety. Many of the great maths thinkers are slow and deliberate. PROBLEM HERE!• Mistakes are a valuable - children should recognise this Problem for LA
and HA children
Practical Ideas -The Skills SessionDeveloping Confidence and Fluency
• Tackling basic skills through introduction of daily ‘Skills Session’ from 8.35am-9.05am
• Used for practice of key arithmetic skills – four operations, tables, fractions, decimals, percentages etc. Working on fluency.
• Opportunities for supported, paired and independent work – children choose the setting in which they want to work promoting sense of ownership of their learning
• Time to conference individual children
• Opportunity for open ended tasks outside traditional lesson structure
Practical Ideas - Role of the ExpertEveryone can be an expert
• Children produce short videos in which they explain the concept and the pitfalls• Opportunity to really engage with process/progress• Engagement of children with low self esteem/fixed mindset• Breaks down some barriers to learning e.g. confidence• Tackles inherited attitudes to maths by sharing with parents on Learning Platform
Modelling long multiplication in Y6
Practical Ideas: Flipped ClassroomsPre-teaching Key Skills – Parental Engagment
• ‘Flipped Classroom’ model enables children to develop confidence at their own pace• Teacher videos posted on school Learning Platform weekly• Allows trial and error; repeated attempts without stigma• Popular with parents who can understand calculation methods and
can engage with their own children• Teachers can model a Growth Mindset
Practical Ideas: Rewarding Progress rather than Achievement?
• Classroom awards, house points, Golden Progress book, postcards home?• Assessment and marking considerations?
Level Mild Hot Spicy Super SpicyAngles I can
identify right angles
I can recognise, measure and draw acute and obtuse angles
I know that the sum of the angles on a line is 180o and the sum of the angles at a point is 360o
I know the sum of the interior angles of a triangle and a quadrilateral.
I can calculate missing angles in triangles and quadrilaterals
I can recognise, measure and draw reflex angles
I can calculate the size of an interior and exterior angles in a regular polygon.
I can calculate missing interior angles and exterior angles in irregular polygons.
I can identify alternate and corresponding angles and calculate missing angles on parallel lines.
A Growth Mind Set:A child’s response – it can make a